The (Not Quite) Librarian on Odd and True by Cat Winters

Historical events woven into dramatic narratives with a touch of the supernatural

“Trudchen grew up hearing Odette’s stories of their monster-slaying mother and a magician’s curse. But now that Tru’s older, she’s starting to wonder if her older sister’s tales were just comforting lies, especially because there’s nothing fantastic about her own life—permanently disabled and in constant pain from childhood polio.

odd and true

In 1909, after a two-year absence, Od reappears with a suitcase supposedly full of weapons and a promise to rescue Tru from the monsters on their way to attack her. But it’s Od who seems haunted by something. And when the sisters’ search for their mother leads them to a face-off with the Leeds Devil, a nightmarish beast that’s wreaking havoc in the Mid-Atlantic states, Tru discovers the peculiar possibility that she and her sister—despite their dark pasts and ordinary appearances—might, indeed, have magic after all.” -from the publisher


odd and true

This book totally blindsided me, in the best way possible!

It started out kind of slow and I fully expected it to be just another paranormal romp- the kind of book that’s pretty bad, but still fairly entertaining.

But holy moly, Odd and True kicked it into high gear!

This book has it all: feminism, (dis)ability, class struggle…The historical fiction angle only served to better highlight these issues. It totally worked for me. And I was pleasantly surprised that it’s set in the western US. Our states don’t usually get any love in monster stories!

Admittedly there were some slow points along the way and I lost interest during some of the flashbacks that explain the sisters’ history, but I loved the balance of supernatural vs. real world struggle.

Definitely read this book if you are looking for a story where young women kick butt, both physically and metaphorically. Thank you to Cat Winters and Abrams Kids for sending me this ARC!

Plus: A socially conscious, historical fiction story about monster hunting sisters. Need I say more?

Minus: I felt like the writing didn’t live up to how much I liked the story overall, but it might not be an issue for other readers.

If you like this book, try:

odd and true

Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman- A Western-style historical fiction about a young woman who shoots first and asks questions later on her quest to avenge her father’s murder.

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Also published on Medium.

My name is Jeri and I currently work in two libraries, one public and one...